How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Arthur Rubin Your Own Question

Arthur Rubin
Arthur Rubin, Tax Preparer
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 1277
Experience:  22 years of tax preparation experience, including individual, trust, and estate returns.
13714381
Type Your Tax Question Here...
Arthur Rubin is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

RR-mt

Customer Question

my sister lives with us off and on all year because she is disabled...we bought a mobile home so she could be on her own if possible...BUT I guess I shouldn't have claimed the mobile home as an asset or rental last year (2010) because she pays her own lot rent but not us for the home itself...basically I want to reverse everything on the mobile home because I can't do our return correctly I don't feel...my husband is a construction superintendent so we really have no loss unless the mobile home burns down or my sister passes away and we don't need it...I've been told I could probably claim this as a second home but I'm not about to lie about something the Lord provided for my sister...please help
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Arthur Rubin replied 2 years ago.

Arthur Rubin :

Thank you for using Just Answer.

Arthur Rubin :

If you own the mobile home, and your sister doesn't pay rent to you, then "a second home" is exactly the correct characterization.

Arthur Rubin :

Admittedly, the lot rent she pays can be considered a payment to you, but it's probably not significant.

Arthur Rubin :

In general, if a relative lives in your property, and doesn't pay reasonable rent (which could be below fair market rent, due to the fact that you know her and might trust her), then it's treated, for (some) tax purposes, as if you lived in the property.

Arthur Rubin :

Please keep in mind that, dependent on the extent of her disability, you may be able to claim her as a dependent. For that purpose, the cost of maintaining the mobile home may be considered as part of her support which you supply.

Arthur Rubin :

There may be other ways it may be considered a rental or investment property, but, unless you can think of some, you'll need to amend your 2009 and 2010 returns to remove it as a rental, and put it in the "second home" category.

Customer :

thank you Arthur...I was apprehensive about the right to use the "second home" category. But now I feel better. Wish me luck in doing the amendments. I hope Turbo is set up to ask the right questions or I'll be back.. take care and thanks again

Customer :

one question more please regarding the right to claim my sister dependent upon her disability..Social Security has said she is 100% disabled and that's why she's getting her Medicare/Medicaid before age 62...she's been getting it about 5 years now I believe..what proof might I need if the IRS asks for proof? also, she has given me authorization (through Social Security) to be responsible for her bill payments, etc. because she forgets and also isn't capable of keeping good records when she is doing the checking, etc. on her own.

Arthur Rubin :

The definition of "permanently and totally disabled" for the purpose of the dependency deduction is "[S]he cannot engage in any substantial gainful activity because of a physical and mental condition." and "A doctor determines that the condition has lasted or is expected to last continuously for at least a year or can lead to death."

Arthur Rubin :

The Social Security Administration has so constructed their web site so that I cannot determine their definition, but I believe it to be comparable. If it is, you can use the SS finding to support the tax finding. If not, you'll need to get a doctor's certification.

Arthur Rubin :

As I read Publication 501, outlining the rules for the dependency exemption, it only seems to make a difference if she has more than $3700 in income (disregarding Social Security), and if she is younger than you (or your spouse), and she lives with you 6 months out of the year. If she has $3700 or less in income, and you supply over half of her "support", then she is either a "qualifying child" or a "qualifying relative" (never mind the wording; a relative can be a qualifying child; a child can be a "qualifying relative" and not a "qualifying child", and neither need actually be a relative.)

Arthur Rubin :

The cost of maintaining the mobile home counts as part of "support".

Arthur Rubin :

If she is considered disabled, then any income from a "sheltered workshop" is excluded from gross income for the purpose of the income test.

Arthur Rubin :

The specific rules (assuming she is over 26) are:

Arthur Rubin :

She is a "qualifying child" if she lives with you at least 6 months of the year, is disabled, and she does not supply half of her support.

Arthur Rubin :

She is a "qualifying relative" if she is not a "qualifying child" of anyone, has at most $3700 in gross income (disregarding Social Security, and (if disabled) income from a "sheltered workshop"), and you supply more than half of her support.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
< Last | Next >
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
  • I WON!!! I just wanted you to know that your original answer gave me the courage and confidence to go into yesterday's audit ready to fight. Bonnie Chesnee, SC
  • Great service. Answered my complex tax question in detail and provided a lot of additional useful information for my specific situation. John Minneapolis, MN
  • Excellent information, very quick reply. The experts really take the time to address your questions, it is well worth the fee, for the peace of mind they can provide you with. Orville Hesperia, California
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    570
    10 years experience
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KU/KUMI95/2013-9-30_195031_kumar.64x64.jpg Wallstreet Esq.'s Avatar

    Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    570
    10 years experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CU/Cuttinggirl/2011-10-29_03719_wcrop2.64x64.jpg Wendy Reed's Avatar

    Wendy Reed

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    3052
    15+ years tax preparation and tax advice.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CATax/2009-08-04_204548_Mark.jpg Mark D's Avatar

    Mark D

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    985
    MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/IN/insearchoftheanswer/2013-8-16_0233_attorney.64x64.jpg Richard's Avatar

    Richard

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3229
    29 years of experience as a tax, real estate, and business attorney.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MY/MyVirtualCPA/2012-7-5_44024_cookmegan1.64x64.jpg Megan C's Avatar

    Megan C

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    6121
    Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JG/jgordosea/2012-6-7_43138_GordosVeritas.64x64.jpg jgordosea's Avatar

    jgordosea

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    2783
    I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OZ/ozaukeecpa/2012-6-7_193219_Picture1croppedandshrunk.64x64.jpg MequonCPA's Avatar

    MequonCPA

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    2231
    CPA, Over 30 yrs experience w/individuals and small businesses. Masters in Tax.
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Tax Professional
Arthur Rubin
Arthur Rubin
869 Satisfied Customers
22 years of tax preparation experience, including individual, trust, and estate returns.